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sungar
03-20-2004, 09:58 PM
I know there have be variations of this question asked, but I'm trying to figure out what I should get as a replacement TV. I've got a constraint that the cabinet I'm putting it in is 38" wide, which rules out the set I would really like (Sony 34" XBR).

I don't yet have digital cable, or a home theatre audio system, but my TV died so I need something that will support the home theatre when I get one. The current list is:

30" Sony KV30XBR910 ($2,000)
34" Panasonic CT-34WX53 ($1,800)
34" Toshiba 34HDX83 ($2,000)

At this point, I'm leaning towards the Panasonic (Sony is smaller, and having a hard time finding someone that has the 34" Toshiba in stock so I can see it) Which of these would you recommend? Are there any others that I should be considering?

Thanks,
-Steve

woodman
03-21-2004, 11:03 AM
I know there have be variations of this question asked, but I'm trying to figure out what I should get as a replacement TV. I've got a constraint that the cabinet I'm putting it in is 38" wide, which rules out the set I would really like (Sony 34" XBR).

I don't yet have digital cable, or a home theatre audio system, but my TV died so I need something that will support the home theatre when I get one. The current list is:

30" Sony KV30XBR910 ($2,000)
34" Panasonic CT-34WX53 ($1,800)
34" Toshiba 34HDX83 ($2,000)

At this point, I'm leaning towards the Panasonic (Sony is smaller, and having a hard time finding someone that has the 34" Toshiba in stock so I can see it) Which of these would you recommend? Are there any others that I should be considering?

Thanks,
-Steve

I cannot in good conscience recommend ANY of those sets to you. What I would recommend would be a re-thinking of the idea of choosing a TV set based upon a piece of furniture to house it in. This is backwards thinking in my view, but one which usually translates to W-A-F (Wife Acceptance Factor). Is that the case here?

If there was a gun placed to my head and I had to choose one of the three sets listed, it would be the Toshiba ... hands down ... no contest whatsoever. But still I feel that $2000 for a direct-view CRT-based TV set is not a wise choice at all. Not when there are such much better alternatives to be had.

Sorry if this was not the sort of answer you were hoping for

ThreeDHomer
03-21-2004, 02:08 PM
Why not go with a Direct View CRT? Everything I read tells me that they still give the best picture, can show black blacks, not grey blacks, and are the most economically feasible. I can understand a fear of tubes going out, but you are not out as much as if your plasma goes out for some reason. CRT's have the longest life, and logic tells me they should have the greatest reliability. I am not an expert by any stretch, so tell me what I am missing. (I am shopping for TV's too. My house was built in 1933, I have no room that will accept a large tv, so I am looking at 30, 34" models)

woodman
03-21-2004, 03:10 PM
Why not go with a Direct View CRT? Everything I read tells me that they still give the best picture, can show black blacks, not grey blacks, and are the most economically feasible. I can understand a fear of tubes going out, but you are not out as much as if your plasma goes out for some reason. CRT's have the longest life, and logic tells me they should have the greatest reliability. I am not an expert by any stretch, so tell me what I am missing. (I am shopping for TV's too. My house was built in 1933, I have no room that will accept a large tv, so I am looking at 30, 34" models)

Well, I am an expert on the subject, if such a thing exists at all, since I've spent more than 50 years actually working on the things - ever since they first showed up on the planet back in the 1940s. "Everything you read" is from people who don't actually know much of anything about the subject ... they only know what their eyes tell them, and that unfortunately is not the most definitive answer to the question - "what set is best? When they say that direct-view CRT sets are the most "economically feasible", they're all wet ... at least when it comes to the sort of set that's being discussed here.

Several of your statements are quite true:
"CRT's have the longest life, and logic tells me they should have the greatest reliability."

But the "I can understand a fear of tubes going out, but you are not out as much as if your plasma goes out for some reason." which intimates that either one is a repairable situation, which they are not. The simple fact is, that losing either one is the end of the story ... repairs cost as much (or more!) than replacing the entire display.

CRT failures are rare, but they can and do happen sometimes. If and when they do, it's financial disaster when the tube is a "widescreen, HDTV-ready" one. Even standard CRTs in the 32" and 36" sizes will cost as much to replace as a whole new set. Therefore, there is a certain amount of risk involved in even these types of TV sets, but if one of them should fail, you'd only be out <$1K ... not the end of the world. But a failure of one of the types of CRTs under discussion here would put you in the possession of a $2K doorstop! Not a pleasant prospect to say the least. This is why I recommend other alternatives to those seeking advice on just what sort of TV to buy. There are much better alternatives to be had IMO.

sungar
03-21-2004, 06:24 PM
Woodman,

I've seen your posts on the subject on other threads, and was wondering if I would end up with the same type of answer. You are correct that the W-A-F (Wife Acceptance Factor) is a main ingredient in the TV needing to fit in the cabinet. While she is as avid a TV watcher as I am, the room and house really isnít set up for anything like a large plasma TV (although when/if we can ever get the house with the play roomÖ. :D ).

The situation is that my old 29Ē TV is dead, so weíve been reduced to watching the 13Ē in the bedroom as our only set. If youíre saying that the sets Iím considering arenít good options because youíre against the HDTV direct view sets in general, what would you recommend replacing the dead set with? Plasma/LCD isnít an option because of size/price, and the 3:4 sets Iím seen arenít that much cheaper then the HDTV sets. For example, the decent 32Ē Sony Iíve seen is about $1300, which is less than the sets Iíve listed, but (failure aside), would have to be replaced sooner than the HD sets when HD become more prevalent.

Also, Iím curious about why the Toshiba is the best of the ones I listed. Are there problems with the Panasonic?

Thanks for your help.
-Steve

sungar
03-21-2004, 06:48 PM
Also, the only local place (San Diego) that I can find that has the Toshiba is Sears, which I'm assuming I won't be able to negotiate down from the $2k. The Panasonic is at Tweeter, and they've already come down from $2k to $1,800. I can get the Sony from Tweeter also, or a refurb 30" unit from the Sony outlet for about $1,600.

Smokey
03-21-2004, 09:11 PM
I know woodman will hit me over the head for this :D, but sorry to say that Sony produces best HD direct monitors.
http://forums.audioreview.com/showthread.php?t=2210


For example, the decent 32Ē Sony Iíve seen is about $1300, which is less than the sets Iíve listed, but (failure aside), would have to be replaced sooner than the HD sets when HD become more prevalent.

I really don't know what you mean that, but Sears do carry 32 inch Sony HD Tv KV-32HS510 for $1300. And Sears will stand behind their products like a brick wall if something goes wrong :)

http://www.sears.com/sr/javasr/product.do?BV_UseBVCookie=Yes&vertical=ELEC&pid=05742683000

sungar
03-22-2004, 10:47 PM
Smokey - Thanks for the info. What I meant was that it didn't seem to make sense to me to spend $1300 on a 4:3 set over $1800 for a 16:9 set since (theoretically) widescreen is going to become more common and I would want to replace the 4:3 at some point with a widescreen. Just spent the extra $$$ now instead of having to buy 2 sets.

Unfortunately the 34" Sony doesn't fit in the space I have, so for a widescreen it's either a 30" Sony or the 34" Panasonic or 34" Toshiba. From the Consumer Reports blurb you posted, it puts the Panasonic as a higher rated set than the Toshiba, but I've also heard good things about the Toshiba (including Woodman's reluctant recommendataion :).

Would it be possible for you to post any major relevant info about the Panasonic or Toshiba (maybe just the conclusion section if that's easy and the rest is hard to get to)?

Thanks again for your help.
-Steve

Smokey
03-23-2004, 04:56 PM
so for a widescreen it's either a 30" Sony or the 34" Panasonic or 34" Toshiba. From the Consumer Reports blurb you posted, it puts the Panasonic as a higher rated set than the Toshiba, but I've also heard good things about the Toshiba (including Woodman's reluctant recommendataion.

4 inch will make alot of difference, so I would omit 30 inch Sony from your list.

If it is hard to decide between Toshiba or Panasonic, beside picture quality, I would also look into their warranty, ease of use, features, etc. See if you can compare them side by side if displayed at store. Just make sure that you calibrate each TV picture setting for the best picture for each TV, and then compare them.

And definitely get your TV from Sears. They will bend over backward if you don't like your purchase as to make you happy.

Good luck and take your time :)